Sports & Athletics
• Champions Use Chiropractic
Top professional players in sports as diverse as golf, tennis and football utilize chiropractic care. Competitors from ESPN’s X Games, surfing, volleyball, rowing, running, sailing, cycling, weightlifting, handball and other sports are chiropractic care enthusiasts.1
In addition to serving athletes at the World Games 2009 in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, for the first time in Olympic history, chiropractic care was fully integrated in caring for athletes at the 2010 Winter Olympics games in Vancouver.2-3
Why is chiropractic so popular among athletes? Two reasons:
1. Chiropractic helps to enhance and enhance athletic performance
2. Chiropractic helps keep athletes on the field and may prevent minor injuries from becoming major ones.4
• Improved Coordination, Reaction Time & Strength
University baseball players were divided into a chiropractic and a non-chiropractic group. They were tested for vertical jump, standing broad jump, broad jump, muscle strength, pulse rate, electrocardiogram, blood pressure and treadmill stress testing. The chiropractic group showed significant improvement over the control group.9
Fifty athletes were divided into two groups. One group received chiropractic care while the control group did not receive care. They were tested for agility, balance, power, speed and hand reaction time. After 12 weeks, the chiropractic group’s improvement was 16.7% including a more than 30% improvement in reaction time! “The [chiropractic] athlete reacts faster, coordinates better, executes fine movements with improved accuracy and precision, amounting to an overall better athlete.”8
For many professional and amateur athletes chiropractic has become a key part of their training and recovery program. 75% of the San Francisco 49ers received chiropractic care the day they won the 1990 Super Bowl.10 At the 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games “chiropractic care was one of the core services. A huge team of chiropractors worked as part of a multi-disciplinary team…. In addition many countries sent their own team chiropractors, with the US team alone sending over 100 to treat their athletes.”11
• Runners & Chiropractic
Sixteen injured female long distance runners were placed under chiropractic care. The runners recovered quickly and seven of them later scored “personal best” performances.12
The University of Tennessee’s track team won the men’s NCAA title after receiving care from team
chiropractor Dr. Michael Petty. After an adjustment from Dr. Petty, decathlete Blake Sabo discovered chiropractic’s performance enhancement benefits. “He actually had six personal bests out of ten events at the meet,” said Dr. Petty.13
• Chiropractic & Professional Football
According to a 2002 article, in US professional football, 77% of National Football League (NFL) trainers referred players to chiropractors and 31% of NFL teams had a chiropractor officially on staff.5 As of 2012, all 32 NFL teams had at least one, if not two, team chiropractors.6
The importance of chiropractic to release stress from the spine and nervous system is even more important than previously realized. The collisions of football cause head trauma that can result in brain trauma. A study commissioned by the NFL of more than 3,500 former players found that former NFL players are more likely to die from neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and ALS.7
• Swimmers & Chiropractic
Olympic head coach Richard Quick of the University of Texas says: “Chiropractic is playing a larger and larger role in all forms of athletics … [it] helps athletic performance.” “If you … want optimum performance, chiropractic helps with that,” says Brian Campbell, DC, a chiropractor who counts USC, UCLA and USA swimming athletes as his patients.14
• Team Chiropractor
Let us not forget the millions of people who regularly perform aerobic workouts. Exercise workouts are much more effective when the body is balanced. “Getting in shape” should always include the “shaping” of the structural system by a chiropractor.
Even kinder, gentler sports can create damage from micro-trauma rather than macro-trauma.
You don’t have to be an Olympiad, a professional athlete or a “serious” athlete to benefit from chiropractic care. Americans suffer from millions of sports-related injuries each year15 and everyone with such an injury needs regular chiropractic checkups.
• Severe Trauma
The orthodox medical profession specializes in the management of fractures, torn flesh, ripped tendons, dislocations, blood and fluid loss, and other damage that may need immediate emergency attention. However, most victims of trauma leave the hospital with serious subluxations from their accidents because MDs are not trained to locate and correct this form of damage. That is the realm of chiropractic care.
Explore chiropractic and natural methods first. As superstar Joe Montana stated, “I only wish I had tried chiropractic care a few years ago when I first started having back pain, and maybe this surgery would never have happened.”16
• What Your Chiropractor Does
Your chiropractor balances your structural system and relieves stress on your muscles, ligaments, tendons and nerves. Sports injuries nearly always jar and misalign your spine and structural system.
• Need A Sports Doctor?
Why not ask your chiropractor if he or she might be interested in providing chiropractic care to your athletes or sponsoring a team? Many doctors of chiropractic get involved with their local little league, neighborhood and school teams.
1. Belov D. PGA championship and summertime sports chiropractic.
August 11, 2007. www.planetc1.com/cgi-bin/n/v.cgi?c=1&id=1186876394.
2. Federation Internationale de Chiropratique du Sport Newsletter. March 31, 2008.
3. 2010 Winter Olympics Games Business Plan and Games Budget, 151.
4. Haldeman S. Spinal manipulative therapy in sports medicine. Clinics
in Sports Medicine. 1986;5:277.
5. Stump JL, Redwood D. The use and role of sport chiropractors in the National Football League: a short report. JMPT. 2002;25:E2.
7. Lehman EJ, Hein MJ, Baron SL, Gersic CM. Neurodegenerative causes of death among retired National Football League players. Neurology. 2012;79(19):1970-1974. Epub 2012 Sep 5.
8. Lauro BM. Chiropractic effects on athletic ability. Chiropractic: The
Journal of Chiropractic Research and Clinical Investigations. 1991;6(4):84-87.
9. Schwartzbauer J, Kolber J, Schwartzbauer DC, Hart JDC, Zhang J.
Effects of chiropractic care on athletic performance in baseball players. Paper presented at the National Subluxation Conference, October 12-13, 1996, Phoenix, AZ.
10. News release. International Chiropractic Association Review. March/April 1990.
12. Grimston SK, Engsberg JR, Shaw L & Vetane NW. Rehabilitation prescribed in coordination with prior chiropractic therapy as a treatment for sacroiliac subluxation in female distance runners. Chiropractic Sports Medicine.
13. Painter J. Peak performers: well-adjusted UT volunteers capture NCAA
track and field championships. Today’s Chiropractic. September/October 2001;52.
14. Stott MJ. Back in the water. Swimming World Magazine. August 2003.
15. News and World Report. July 31, 1989;56.
16. Interview with Nick Athens, DC. Today’s Chiropractic. March/April